The National Audubon Society has conducted Christmas bird counts since the year 1900. Volunteers from throughout the Western Hemisphere go afield during one calendar day between December 14 and January 5 to record every bird species and individual bird encountered within a designated 15-mile diameter circle. These records now comprise an extensive ornithological database that enables monitoring of winter bird populations and the overall health of the environment.
Participants are typically assigned to teams based on their bird identification skills and endurance. Many counts hold a compilation dinner at the end of the day where results are tabulated and stories shared. There is no longer a participation fee. Help is needed on most of these counts, so find one or more of interest to you and contact the compiler for information.
by Walter Thurber
The Appleton-Whittell Christmas Bird Count (AWCBC) on Tuesday, January 3, 2017, was a great success! The tentative numbers show 103 species and 4448 total individual birds recorded. Last years numbers were 105 species and 2,726 individual birds recorded. If you would like to participate in the next AWCBC, send email to Suzanne Wilcox.